Theresa May to remain British PM after winning confidence vote
London, Dec. 12, 2018 (AltAfrica)-Prime Minister Theresa May has won a vote of confidence in her leadership of the Conservative Party by 200 to 117.
The result was greeted by cheers and applause from Tory MPs as it was announced by backbench Tory chairman Sir Graham Brady.
It means Mrs May is immune from another leadership challenge for a year.
The vote was triggered by 48 of her MPs angry at her Brexit policy, which they say betrays the 2016 referendum result.
Before the vote, May told her MPs she expects to step down before the next scheduled election in 2022.
“It is not her intention to lead the party in the 2022 general election,” Solicitor General Robert Buckland told the BBC after the meeting.
“Quite rightly she is focusing on the here and now and the need for Brexit to be delivered.”
MPs and ministers had rallied round May since the confidence vote was announced on Wednesday morning, sending the pound rising amid expectations she would win.
In a defiant statement earlier outside her Downing Street office, the prime minister said she was “ready to finish the job” by taking Britain out of the European Union next March.
She warned that ousting her now, sparking a weeks-long leadership contest, would “create uncertainty when we can least afford it”.
May also warned that finding a successor — who would automatically become prime minister — “would mean either delaying or stopping Brexit”.
Victory would make the prime minister immune from a further Conservative challenge for a year under parliamentary rules, but would not resolve her central problem — how to get divided MPs to agree to her Brexit deal.
She was forced to postpone this week’s vote in the House of Commons on the text after admitting she faced a huge defeat, as her own MPs joined with opposition parties to reject it.